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Leadtek K7NCR18D-Pro (nForce2) motherboard
By Vijay Anand
Category : Mainboard
Published by Jimmy Tang on Sunday, 1st December, 2002
Rating : 4 out of 5 stars  

The nForce2 Has Arrived!

In our recent AMD AthlonXP 2800+ CPU review, we used the highly anticipated NVIDIA nForce2 based motherboard to match it up against the Intel counterparts and we have since found a tremendous improvement in tests results, which is thanks to the new nForce2 platform. You could say that AMD had been waiting for such an opportunity to leverage itself in recent times and the nForce2 was just the ticket. Although the performance obtained seemed refreshing after a long while with the VIA KTxxx series, those early nForce2 boards had random stability issues. This is no surprise since the motherboards, BIOS and drivers were pretty much at infancy.

That was an earlier period but now, full retail boards are already available on the shelves. Leadtek propelled themselves to be one of the first to have their boards available to the mass public. The nForce2 like the original nForce, are available in two primary flavours; one with the integrated graphics core and the other without it. We’ll be looking at the Leadtek K7NCR18D-Pro motherboard that used an nForce2 core without the integrated graphics portion.

Before moving on to the motherboard feature coverage, readers are requested to be familiar with the offerings of the original nForce chipset and its workings. The nForce2 has not changed radically over the original nForce architecture, which is why readers would find it worthwhile to read up on the Leadtek WinFast TwinForce2 review , where we have discussed the NVIDIA nForce chipset’s features and its workings.

Leadtek K7NCR18D-Pro Technical Specifications
  • Socket A for AMD Athlon / AMD Athlon XP / AMD Duron
  • AMD processors at 600MHz to 2GHz or higher
  • Support for 200 / 266 / 333MHz FSB
  • NVIDIA nForce2-SPP (nForce2-ST) North Bridge
    • Supports DDR200 / DDR266 / DDR333 / DDR400 memory technology up to 3GB
    • 200 / 266 / 333MHz front side bus
    • AGP 4x/8x (1.5V only)
    • Dynamic Adaptive Speculative (DASP)
    • DualDDR Memory Architecture
    • HyperTransport Bus (800MB/s)
  • NVIDIA nForce2 MCP-T South Bridge
    • NVIDIA Audio Processing Unit (with Dolby Digital Interactive Content Encoder)
    • NVIDIA StreamThru
    • NVIDIA Enhanced Communications Suite
    • NVIDIA DualNet
    • 2-channel Ultra ATA 133/100/66/33 Bus Mastering IDE controller
    • Supports up to six USB 2.0 ports
    • IEEE1394a/Firewire controller
    • Supports AC-97 audio and MC-97 modem codec
    • PCI 2.2 interface
    • HyperTransport Bus (800MB/s)
Cache memory
  • CPU Built-in 256KB (Athlon/Athlon XP) or 64KB (Duron) L2 cache
System memory
  • 3 x 184-pin DDR SDRAM DIMM
  • Supports DDR 200/266/333/400 DIMM Module
  • Supports 2.5V DDR SDRAM
  • Supports a maximum of 3GB of memory with 512MB DIMM
  • DualDDR Memory Architecture
  • 2x bus master UDMA-33/66/100/133 IDE ports (up to 4 devices)
  • Support for PIO, UDMA-33, UDMA-66, UDMA-100, UDMA-133  IDE
I/O Interface
  • 1x floppy connector (360KB - 2.88MB)
  • 2x serial ports
  • 1x parallel port (SPP/EPP/ECP)
  • 1x PS/2 Keyboard
  • 1x PS/2 Mouse
  • 6x USB 2.0 ports (2x ports in the rear, 4x ports via expansion headers on board - optional USB module)
  • 3 x IEEE1394a/Firewire ports (via supplied 1394a module on an ACR card)
  • 1x IrDA TX/RX header for SIR/ASKIR/IRDA
  • 1x CIR connector
  • Audio ports for on-board sound (Line-Out, Line-In, Mic) based on 6-channel Realtek ALC650 AC'97 sound codec and nForce APU.
  • Digital Coaxial output bracket
  • 1x Game port
  • 1x Smart Cart Reader Connector
  • 1x 10/100 LAN port
Expansion slots
  • 4x 32-bit PCI slots, PCI 2.2 compliant
  • 1x ACR slot
  • 1x AGP (4x/8x mode, 1.5Vonly) slot - AGP 3.0 compliant
Power Management
  • Supports ACPI (Advanced Configuration and Power Interface)
  • Power-on by switch, LAN, Modem, keyboard, alarm
  • Power-off by Windows 95/98/Me/2000/XP/NT shut down and switch
Form Factor
  • ATX Form Factor : 30.4cm x 25cm
  • Fits into regular ATX case
  • 2 Mbit (256KB) Flash ROM
  • Award Flash BIOS with PnP, APM, DMI, and ACPI support
  • Multi-boot on LS120, ZIP, ATAPI CD-ROM, SCSI, IDE #1, #2, #3, #4

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